Winter Sports and Snow
Snow and ice can provide a playground for winter sports as well as give us the beauty of a winter wonderland. Learn about the science of both of these areas, from what makes the “best” ice for skating, the chemicals that give us a smooth trip down the slopes, the science of snowflakes, and more.
- Putting the Ice in Hockey
Walking on a winter sidewalk can make you feel like you’ve stepped onto a skating rink. How do states of matter work to get these rinks skate-ready?
- The Science of Hockey
Ever thought ice is just ice? Find out what hockey announcers and players mean by “fast ice” and “slow ice” and what it takes to get them.
- Synthetic Ice Rinks
Take your pick: natural ice, artificial ice, or synthetic ice. Our question: Which one hurts the least when you fall down?
- An Ice Rink Without Real Ice
Hear from the users themselves. What’s it like to skate on fake ice? And what makes it work?
- Hunting for Perfluorochemicals in Ski Wax
Getting a speed boost from ski wax can have a health trade-off. Find out why.
- Skiing and Friction
Here’s some suggestions for turning a love for skiing into a science project.
- Olympic Science
Learn about the slick science that helps Winter Olympians and other winter enthusiasts skate and ski their best.
- Science and Engineering of the Winter Olympics
How is a quadrocopter like an ice dancer? What’s up with those skin-tight speed skating suits? Find out in this video series.
- Materials Break into Snow Business
Buildings. Snow. Clothing. We don’t often think about it, but there’s plenty of science behind the structures and materials you see at the Olympics.
- Cutting Edge Technology at the Sochi Olympics
Luge racers turn to a chemical company for cutting edge technology.
- Accelerations in Snowboarding
Get your physics fix as you see how one person used lab technology to capture snowboarding data.
- Science Fun in the Snow
Take the lab outdoors (or into the freezer) with this series of snow experiments, including some that sound delicious.
- Homemade Ice Cream with Snow
Use snow to give a twist to the typical ice cream in a baggie science experiment.
- Snow Globe Lab
A successful snow globe is the student goal in this open-ended lab, while learning about solubility along the way.
- Benzoic Acid Blizzard in a Bottle
Choose a fun plastic figurine for your blizzard bottle, then let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.
- Frozen Bubbles
Think it’s too cold to go outside? You might want to anyway to create your own bubbles after seeing these photos.
- Ice Spikes
These “strange things you can find in your freezer” aren’t forgotten leftovers or mystery meat. Learn about these bits of strange science.
- What Causes Ice to Be Slippery?
Ice can be a hotly debated topic! Look at theories of why ice is such a slippery substance.
- Instant Snow Polymer
You won’t even need to put on your mittens for this one! “Snow” comes indoors with this comparison of instant snow to diaper powder.
- Snowflake Bentley
Link literature to science for the younger crowd. Read about Wilson Bentley’s work with snowflakes, then make your own—edible and non-edible.
- Live Snowflake Feed
No snow in your area? Enjoy a snowfall virtually and learn how the project helps with making accurate weather models.